David Bavin

Scat

PhD Researcher, University of Exeter

Pine Marten Project Officer, Vincent Wildlife Trust

I am a zoologist with a broad range of interests, originally studying marine zoology but progressing through work to focus on UK mammals, with a particular interest in carnivores. I am currently the Project Officer for The Vincent Wildlife Trust’s (VWT) Pine Marten Recovery Project, which aims to restore the pine marten (Martes martes) to parts of its former range in England and Wales. We have currently completed two phases of translocation, and have established a breeding population of pine martens in mid-Wales – this is the first project of this kind for a carnivore in the UK.

Given the global trend of biodiversity decline, I believe we as conservationists need to become ever more holistic, canny, and resourceful in our efforts to slow the rate of loss. My PhD research seeks to answer questions related to how we can learn and improve from conservation translocations to maximise their success rate. I seek to learn how individual personality can impact translocated animals, and how they respond physiologically to the process. As a Chester Zoo conservation scholar I am working with the science team at the zoo, supervised by Dr Sue Walker, to try and understand what role stress can play during translocation and establishment of the pine martens.